Ernesto’s V3 special

Ernesto’s V3 special

Ernesto came to me with some very specific ideas in mind of how he wanted his bike to fit, ride and look. A good set of fit numbers took care of the first, careful tube selection took care of the second, then I had to take on the challenge of the last!

The most challenging part was that Ernesto requested a carbon headtube insert, but with a tapered headtube and internal bearings. I have done all of those things before, but not in the same project….. I worked up the headtube design, to match the geometry and fit the Parlee tapered fork, using Cane Creek AER2 bearings. I was able to integrate the upper bearing seat into the tube, but I couldn’t do the same at the lower bearing since I would need to be able to add the carbon tube. So that bearing seat would be a custom machined inset headset cup, to be pressed in place after the carbon was bonded in. Trying to hold the wall tolerance I wanted for the headtube on my manual lathe over that length of taper wasn’t possible, but I was able to find a local machine shop that could produce it to spec in 4130 cromoly. I asked them to also turn an aluminium mandrel with the same taper. This my friends at Ruckus Composites then used to make the tapered carbon tube – with an outer woven layer to match the Enve tube used for the seatmast.

Ernesto asked for dropped seatstays in the style of my time trial bikes. To accomplish this the rear brake was moved to under the chainstays, and the lug for the seatmast was extended down, with cutouts inbetween. The seatstays are custom tapered ovalised tubes that tuck neatly behind the seattube.

The rest of the frame was relatively straightforward – Columbus aero downtube, custom ovalised toptube, short taper Columbus chainstays and Paragon dropouts.

But then we come to paint! Ernesto sent a Kask Paul Smith helmet which had a multicolored fade from blue to orange, and asked for the frame to match. Eric at Colorworks delivered on this request, with a fantastic fade from front to back in gloss, with the carbon and logos in matte. He also refinished the Mcfk bar and stem to match.

The build is focused on lightweight parts – Curve/Extralite clincher wheels, Easton crankset (with powermeter), EE brakes and SRAM eTap. The final weight comes in at 14.7lbs.


One Comment

  1. Impressive addition to your already fantastic portfolio
    I love that head tube.

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